2011 MFA Exhibition April 30 - May 20 Sullivan Galleries, School of the Art Institute of Chicago Exhibition blog I co-curated the 2011 Thesis Exhibitions at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. I worked with over thirty graduate students, curating their work into several group exhibitions, including “ On the Run,” “ Renditions,” “ Or Just After,” and “ Present Perfect.” I worked with curatorial assistants (graduate students) Jenny Gerow, Alex Gartelmann and Leah Oren, as part of a graduate seminar in curatorial practice led by Mary Jane Jacob.
Curatorial Statement In an essay for their 2003 exhibition Inside the Echo, Søren Andreasen and Lars Bang Larsen consider the echo as both methodology and metaphor, signifying a “time and space where many discourses unfold and mumble.” In their model, works are presented as “continued discussions rather than as isolated statements or masterpieces.” It is in this spirit that our curated sections have been organized, with a gestural curatorial hand.
If affectation trumps plot and attitude meets aesthetic, then the subtext for everything here is a different kind of knowledge—one where value judgments are reflexive and flickering, driven by the rhythm of intuitive ebbs and intellectual flows. To that end, each graduating artist is united by a commitment to art as a constant reinvention of knowledge through the creation of images, objects and sound. Students of everything and nothing, they use the tools they have been given to move beyond their zone of comfort, into uncertain yet invigorating territory.
In service of this incredible pulse, the artists in our sections have been grouped thematically in order to create a productive lens that amplifies rather than over-determines connections in process and approach to subject, form and material. It is our hope that each theme serves as a proposition, or place to begin: a tool for just one kind of legibility. And as one moves through the exhibition, the theme should exist like an echo, bouncing across time and space before ultimately fading away.